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Flints or Piezo-Electric: What's Your Preference?

(27 posts)
  • Started 2 months ago by tufftony
  • Latest reply from hugodrax
  1. tufftony

    tufftony

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    Personally I prefer a Piezo-Electric lighter that doesn't require
    a flint. I have two Zippo pipe lighters neither of which I use,
    not because they use flints (which I see as obsolete technology)
    but because they seem constantly to need re-filling. They also
    don't produce as good a flame as my Colibri Pacific II Pipe Lighter,
    a supposedly 'soft flame' that is more easily directed into the pipe
    bowl because of the lighter's design.

    As for the high-end lighters ($100.00 and more) requiring 'special'
    flints that aren't widely available -- Whaat? 'Special' flints? Are you
    kidding? Am I the only one who smells a scam here? What can be
    'special' about a flint or a lighter that won't produce a spark without
    one?

    Whatever the case I prefer not running out of flints, not having to go
    hunting for 'special' flints, and not having the hassle of constantly
    having to replace flints. My piezo sparks every time and will (I hope)
    continue to spark forever. Or am I just plain wrong about all this?

    Posted 2 months ago #
  2. rfernand

    r

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    What’s an example of a “special flint”?

    Dunhill will return.
    Posted 2 months ago #
  3. tufftony

    tufftony

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    I think the Kiribi Mikazuki is one.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  4. rfernand

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    Nah, these fit: Universal flints bulk

    The only picky lighter i know is the Dunhill Unique, and even then, not a problem.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  5. warren

    warren

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    Some lighters work better with soft flints, others handle hard flints better. A hard flint in a butane lighter is usually trouble.

    A man without a shillelagh is a man without an expedient.
    Posted 2 months ago #
  6. jaytex969

    jaytex969

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    I prefer piezo but have not met a durable one yet, so I use the IM Corona flint lighter.

    As for "special" flints, my B&M guy, whom I like and trust, advised me that the Ronson flints I was using were harder than the ones recommended for the IM Corona and may cause premature wear of the striker wheel.

    Since he carried the recommended ones and they were competitive in cost, I got some. I guess if they are softer, they will wear down quicker but so far I've not noticed a huge difference.

    Gunner, Black Frigate. Say "Hello" to my little friend!
    Posted 2 months ago #
  7. tufftony

    tufftony

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    Well, my Colibri has been holding up well and hasn't given
    me any trouble so far and at 60 bucks it's not so bad compared
    to the prices of some of those high end lighters. I also like
    the gunmetal finish. Here's link with full information:

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/New-Colibri-Pacific-Air-Pipe-Lighter-Soft-Flame-in-Brushed-Gunmetal-Black/323695970311?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&_trksid=p2060353.m1438.l2649

    Posted 2 months ago #
  8. eggrollpiper

    eggrollpiper

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    I don't know that I have a preference. I use both plus matches and hemp wick depending on a variety of factors. I can say though that I have a Brog Corona knock off that I've refilled a dozen times at least and it's still on it's original flint, hard or soft Inhave no idea.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  9. onestrangeone

    onestrangeone

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    No preference really, all of my cigar lighters and one pipe lighter are piezo, my IM Corona Old Boy probably gets more use than my Lotus L11 does, I like the feel of it better. Changing a flint every 6 months or so isn’t that big of a deal and flints are cheap enough that I buy several packs at a time, I shouldn’t have to worry about running out for quite a few years.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  10. jpmcwjr

    jpmcwjr

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    My piezo sparks every time and will (I hope)
    continue to spark forever. Or am I just plain wrong about all this?

    Yes.

    I know that you believe you understood what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.
    Posted 2 months ago #
  11. hoosierpipeguy

    hoosierpipeguy

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    Theoretically, a piezoelectric crystal should last indefinitely. Realistically, they don't. With continued use, the crystal may deform or even break, therefore rendering it useless. Other things in the mechanism/circuit can also fail.

    With that said, I prefer a piezo lighter over a flint. I wish, however, they would start coming out with batteries that can be easily changed.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  12. jpmcwjr

    jpmcwjr

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    ...supposedly 'soft flame' that is more easily directed into the pipe bowl because of the lighter's design.

    Directional gizmos on lighters are unnecessary, and are more apt to scorch rims when used by the careless, beginner, or ignorant. [Not that I am saying you are any of the forgoing.]

    And, if you think they are necessary or a good thing, then they are for you.

    Posted 2 months ago #
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    bullet08

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    flint. zippo never failed me before. neither has bic.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  14. greatdane

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    I've found Piezo lighters to be absolutely worthless at my altitude (8000 ft). Prefer matches but have a Sarome flint pipe lighter as a back-up which has worked flawlessly for a decade +.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  15. skydog

    skydog

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    My zippo and bic lighters never fail me. Can be a pain to refill the zippo but it's so satisfying to use that it's worth the occasional hassle. As much as I love modern technology in some scenarios, there are others were the tried and true old methods just work better for me.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  16. tufftony

    tufftony

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    I've found Piezo lighters to be absolutely worthless at my altitude (8000 ft). Prefer matches but have a Sarome flint pipe lighter as a back-up which has worked flawlessly for a decade +.

    That's interesting, but I'm pretty well at sea-level so I've no worries there.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  17. jazz

    jazz

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    Flints because they always work. I have never had a piezo one that didn't fail.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  18. chasingembers

    Embers

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    Flints. Holding down a piezo striker is hell on my wrists.

    Damnation seize my soul if I give you quarters, or take any from you.
    -Edward Teach
    Posted 2 months ago #
  19. kcghost

    kcghost

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    Flint all the way. Never fails.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  20. balkisobrains

    balkisobrains

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    greatdane
    I've found Piezo lighters to be absolutely worthless at my altitude (8000 ft).

    I think this is mainly a problem with the pre-set air/fuel ratios of lighters in general, whatever the ignition source. I can't say for sure that a quartz spark would be reduced at higher altitudes compared to ground level, but I doubt it. I actually think it might end up being stronger up there. But I know that any lighter will run richer at higher altitudes because there is less oxygen in the air. High-altitude lighters are set up to run a little lean at ground level. There are flint & piezo high-altitude lighters.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  21. cigrmaster

    cigrmaster

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    The only electric lighters I own are all IM Corona Pipemasters. My oldest is around 6 years old and no issues. I also own a couple of Old Boys and I use IM Corona flints in them. They are cheap and easy to get. I once tried using Zippo flints in my Old Boy but found they were way too soft and got misshapen very easily.

    Harris
    Posted 2 months ago #
  22. balkisobrains

    balkisobrains

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    Those are a pain if you light left-handed, kind of like those butane pipe inserts for Zippos.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  23. cossackjack

    cossackjack

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    greatdane
    I'm at 8100 feet elevation in Evergreen.
    I use piezo-igniton & flint lighters. (Living in a Red Flag Zone, I never use matches as I exclusively smoke outside.)
    The piezo lighters are more fiddly, sensitive to gas flow & spark gap; adjusting one or both will allow many piezo lighters to function up to 10,000 feet. I have a few that fail to work regardless of any adjustments.
    However, my preference is a Zippo Thunderbird butane pipe insert with flint-ignition.

    "A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly.
    Specialization is for insects!" - Robert Heinlein
    Posted 2 months ago #
  24. upnorth1

    upnorth1

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    I use a Piezo-Electric butane pipe insert in my Zippo.

    Posted 2 months ago #
  25. balkisobrains

    balkisobrains

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    There's always the "flint, hold the wick, hold the fuel" option. The instructions show some guy lighting a pipe with it!

    http://www.toledo-bend.us/VCL/showpage.asp?name=Transfo%20Instructions&item=Transfo

    http://www.toledo-bend.us/VCL/lighters/index.asp?request=lighters200

    Posted 2 months ago #
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    bent1

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    Flints because they always work. I have never had a piezo one that didn't fail.

    x2

    Posted 2 months ago #
  27. hugodrax

    hugodrax

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    I prefer a standard zippo. Again, I think this is one that comes down to personality. If you’re the type of feller (like me) whose fountain pens always blot and whose watches tend to get overwound, then piezo electrics crap out when you drop them enough times or get them all jammed up with pocket lint. I mean, first thing that happened to my zippo chimney was the top piece fell out, bounced twice on the pavement, and went right down a storm drain. Caveman technology is just better for guys like me.

    Posted 2 months ago #

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